The J. Scheidegger Center brings back live arts, opens season with MAGIC

The J. Scheidegger Center for the Arts at Lindenwood University is ramping up for the long-awaited return of live entertainment. The Scheidegger is presenting a season filled with performances to appeal to everyone, starting with a magic show that is sure to leave audiences amazed.

Masters of Illusion will take the stage on Sept. 18 at 7 p.m. It is America’s largest touring magic show and features some of the greatest magicians of our time (as seen on The CW Network’s hit primetime television series of the same name).

The Masters of Illusion performance will feature a trio of talented magicians. One of the world’s most celebrated illusionists, Rob Lake, will perform on the Scheidegger stage. His large-scale illusions have dazzled and entertained millions across network television, in Times Square, on the Vegas strip, Atlantic City, resorts, and before sold-out audiences in casinos, arenas, and theatres worldwide. In 2008, Lake became the youngest magician in history to receive the Merlin Award — magic’s highest honor and the industry equivalent of an Oscar.

Combining the art of magic with the macabre, Dan Sperry will bring his unique brand of edgy illusions. He starred in the best-selling magic show in Broadway history and headlined its world tours for five years. Sperry’s eccentric humor and magic has appeared on television, viral internet videos and at countless sold-out venues. The “shock illusionist” is also a two-time recipient of The Merlin Award. Sperry presents a magic show for people who love magic shows but an even better show for people who hate magic shows.

Tom Burgoon is a comedy magician and hypnotist with a career that spans over four decades. In addition to performing on television, he has performed for thousands in Las Vegas, Reno and L.A. as well as performing for President George W. Bush at the inaugural ball.

click to enlarge Masters of Illusion®, the J. Scheidegger Center's season opener
Masters of Illusion®, the J. Scheidegger Center's season opener

Kathleen Eads, director of theater operations at the Scheidegger Center, is ready to welcome audiences back to Lindenwood. “We can’t wait to hear the applause and laughter again,” she says. “Now that we can bring guests, staff and performers safely back, we are thrilled to share live entertainment with our community.”

After Masters of Illusion, the Scheidegger Center will present Ben and Noel Haggard, bringing fans back to a simpler time of country western in their musical tribute to their dad, Merle, along with special guest EmiSunshine — one of Rolling Stones “10 New Country Artists You Need to Know.” The Southern Fried Chicks will bring the laughs with their down-to-earth comedy — perfect for a girls’ night out! Lightwire Theater will perform “A Very Electric Christmas” as a special holiday treat for all with their amazing technological storytelling. Big Bad Voodoo Daddy will put their swing take on classic holiday songs for their “Wild and Swingin’ Holiday Party,” along with original songs from the band’s two full-length holiday albums. Cirque Mechanics will bring their feats of engineering and acrobatics to the stage in “Birdhouse Factory.” Terry Fator will delight with his mastery of ventriloquism and the incomparable music of Tower of Power will rock the house. Last, but not least, one of the most influential and revered jazz masters, Branford Marsalis, and his award-winning quartet will close out the Scheidegger’s season.

In addition to a jam-packed season, the Scheidegger Center is implementing numerous safety precautions related to COVID-19 to bring back audiences safely. All high-touch surfaces are being cleaned on a regular basis and a state-of-the-art air cleaning technology was installed in the theater. All audiences and staff will be masked and temperature checks will occur at the door. Additionally, there is a new refund policy. “We are offering no-questions-asked refunds so if someone isn’t feeling great – even the day of a show – they will get a refund for their ticket value if they call our box office,” says Eads.

Live entertainment is back for the St. Louis area. Don’t miss out on a night of large-scale illusions, slight-of-hand, interactive mind magic, comedy and dangerous escapes; join the Scheidegger Center for Masters of Illusion on Sept. 18. and an exciting 2021-2022 touring series. For more information, tickets and pick-a-pack bundles, visit

J. Scheidegger Center touring series lineup:

Masters of Illusion® – Sept. 18, 7 PM

The Haggard Brothers with EmiSunshine – Oct. 9, 8 PM

Southern Fried Chicks: Cage Free Comedy Tour – Nov. 20, 8 PM

Lightwire Theater’s A Very Electric Christmas – Dec. 5, 3 PM

Big Bad Voodoo Daddy: Wild and Swingin’ Holiday Party – Dec. 23, 8 PM

Cirque Mechanics: Birdhouse Factory – Jan. 22, 7 PM

Terry Fator – Feb. 26, 8 PM

Tower of Power – March 19, 8 PM

An Evening with Branford Marsalis – April 14, 7 PM